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MATT. xxiv. 1, 2. And Jesus went from the temple, and departed. And His

disciples came to Him to shew Him the buildings of the temple. And He answered and said unto them, See ye not all these things ? Verily I say unto you, there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.

For inasmuch as He said, Your house is left desolate, and had previously forewarned them of many grievous things; therefore the disciples having heard these things, as though marvelling at it, came unto Him, shewing the beauty of the temple, and wondering, if so much beauty was to be destroyed, and materials so costly, and variety of workmanship past utterance; He no longer thenceforth talks to them of desolation merely, but foretels an entire destruction. See ye not all these things, saith He, and do ye marvel, and are ye amazed ? There shall not remain one stone upon another. How then did it remain ? one may say. But what is this? For neither so hath the prediction fallen to the ground. For He said these things either indicating its entire desolation, or at that spot where He was. For there are parts of it destroyed unto the foundations.

And together with this we would say another thing also, that from what hath been done, even the most contentious ought to believe concerning the remains, that they are utterly to be destroyed.

And as He sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto Him privately, saying, Tell us when shall these False Christs and troubles foretold.

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things be? and what shall be the sign of Thy Coming, and Matt.

XXIV. of the end of the world?

Therefore did they come unto Him privately, as it was of such matters they meant to enquire. For they were in travail to know the day of His Coming, because of their eager desire to behold that glory, which is the cause of countless blessings. And these two things do they ask him, When shall these things be? that is, the overthrow of the temple; and, What is the sign of Thy Coming? But Luke saith', the question was one concerning Jerusalem, as though Luke they were supposing that then is His Coming. And Mark saith, that neither did all of them ask concerning the end of Jerusalem, but Peter and John', as having greater freedom ? See of speech. What then saith He? Take heed that no man deceive

v. 4_6. you. For many shall come in My Name, saying, I am Christ, and shall deceive many. And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars. See that ye be not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.

For since they felt as being told of vengeance falling on others when hearing of that which was to be brought upon Jerusalem, and as though they were to be out of the turmoils, and were dreaming of good things only, and looked for these to befal them quite immediately; for this cause He again foretels to them grievous things, making them earnest, and commanding them on two grounds to watch, so as neither to be seduced by the deceit of them that would beguile them, nor to be overpowered by the violence of ills that should overtake them.

For the war, saith He, shall be twofold, that of the deceivers, and that of the enemies, but the former far more grievous, as coming upon them in the confusion and turmoils, and when men were terrified and troubled. For indeed great was the storm then, when the Roman power was beginning to flourish, and cities were taken, and camps and weapons were set in motion, and many were readily believed.

But of wars in Jerusalem is He speaking; for it is not surely of those without, and every where in the world; for what did they care for these? And besides, He would thus say nothing new, if He were speaking of the calamities of the world at large, which are happening always. For before

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996 Troubles of the Jeus truly judgments from God. HOMIL. this, were wars, and tumults, and fightings; but He speaks of

the Jewish wars coming upon them at no great distance, for henceforth the Roman arms were a matter of anxiety. Since then these things also were sufficient to confound them, He foretels them all.

Then to shew that He Himself also will assail the Jews with them, and war on them, He speaks not of battles only, but also of plagues sent from God, famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, shewing that the wars also He Himself permitted to come upon them, and that these things do not happen for no purpose according to what has been before the accustomed course of things amongst men, but proceed from the wrath on high.

Therefore He saith, they shall come not by themselves or at once, but with signs. For that the Jews may not say, that they who then believed were the authors of these evils, therefore hath He told them also of the cause of their coming

For verily I say unto you, He said before, all these things shall come upon this generation, having made mention of the stain of blood on them.

Then lest on hearing of the showers of evils, they should suppose the Gospel to be broken through, He added, Take heed, be not troubled, for all things must come to pass, i. e. which I foretold, and the approach of the temptations will set aside none of the things which I have said; but there shall indeed be tumults and confusion, but nothing shall shake My predictions.

Then since He had said to the Jews, Ye shall not see Me, till ye shall suy, Blessed is He that cometh in the Name of the Lord; and the disciples supposed, that together with the destruction would be the End also; to set right this secret thought of theirs, He said, But the End is not yet. For that they did suspect even as I said, you may learn from their question. For, what did they ask? When shall these things be? i. e. when shall Jerusalem be destroyed? And what is the sign of Thy Coming, and of the End of the world?

But He answered nothing directly to this question, but first speaks of those other things that are urgent, and which it was needful for them to learn first. For neither concerning Jerusalem straightway, nor of His own second Coming, did Trials of the Church also foretold.

997 He speak, but touching the ills that were to meet them at Matt.

XXIV. the doors. Wherefore also He makes them earnest in their

6-13. exertions, by saying, Take heed that no man deceive you ; for many shall come in My Name, saying, I am Christ.

Afterwards, when He hath roused them to listen about these things; (for, take heed, saith He, that no man deceire you;) and having made them energetic, and prepared them to be watchful, and hath spoken first of the deceivers, the false Christs, then He speaks of the ills of Jerusalem, assuring them ever by the things already past, foolish and contentious though they were, of those which were yet to come.

[2.] But by wars and rumours of wars, He meaneth, what I before said, the troubles coming upon them. After this, because, as I have already said, they supposed after that war the End would come, see how He warns them, saying, But the End is v. 7. not yet. For nation, He saith, shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. Of the preludes to the ills of the Jews doth He speak. All these are the beginning of sorrows, v. 8. that is, of those that befal them. Then shall they deliver v. 9. you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you.

. In good season did He introduce their ills, having a consolation from the common miseries; and not in this way only, but also by His adding, that it is for My Name's sake. For

ye

shall be hated, He saith, of all men for My Name's v.10-13. sake. Then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and many false Christs and false prophets shall arise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold; but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.

This is the greater evil, when the war is intestine too, for there were many false brethren. Seest thou the war to be threefold ? from the deceivers, from the enemies, from the false brethren. See Paul too lamenting over the same things, and saying, Without were fightings, within were fears';'2 Cor. and, perils among false brethren; and again, For such are

7, 5. false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves 11, 26. into the apostles of Christ'.

3 ib.v.13. After this again, what is more grievous than all, they shall not have so much as the consolation from love. Then indicating, that these things will in no degree harm the noble

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998 The Gospel preached to all nations before the Homil. and the firm, He saith, Fear not, neither be troubled. For

if ye shew forth the patience that becomes you, the dangers will not prevail over you. And it is a plain proof of this, that the word shall surely be preached every where in the world, so much shall ye be above the things that alarm you. For, that they may not say, how then shall we live? He said

more, Ye shall both live and preach every where. Therefore v. 14. He added moreover, And this Gospel shall be preached in

the whole world for a wilness to all nations, and then shall the end come, of the downfal of Jerusalem.

For in proof that He meant this, and that before the taking

of Jerusalem the Gospel was preached, hear what Paul saith, Rom. Their sound went into all the earth'; and again, The Gospel 10:18;, which was preached to everycreature which is under Heaven.

And seest thou him running from Jerusalem unto Spain? And if one took so large a portion, consider what the rest also wrought. For writing to others also, Paul again saith

concerning the Gospel, that it is bringing forth fruit, and 3 Col. 1, growing up in every creature which is under Heaven.

But what meaneth, For a witness to all nations? Forasmuch as though it was every where preached, yet it was not every where believed. It was for a witness, He saith, to them that were disbelieving, that is, for conviction, for accusation, for a testimony; for they that believed will bear witness against them that believed not, and will condemn them. And for this cause, after the Gospel is preached in every part of the world, Jerusalem is destroyed, that they may not have so much as a shadow of an excuse for their perverseness. For they that saw His power shine throughout every place, and in an instant take the world captive, what excuse could they then have for continuing in the same perverseness ? For in proof that it was every where preached

at that time, hear what Paul saith, of the Gospel which was Col. 1, preached to every creature which is under Heaven'.

Which also is a very great sign of Christ's power, that in twenty or at most thirty years the word had reached the ends of the world. “After this therefore," saith He, “shall come the end of Jerusalem.” For that He intimates this was manifested by what follows.

For He brought in also a prophecy, to confirm their de

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